New Books & Novel Discoveries (January 2020)

This has been one of those really weird months where I could swear I bought way more books than I did. Every time I think about it, I can only recall the one physical book I purchased, but it doesn’t feel right. I guess it’s because I could have purchased more, but didn’t. Maybe I really am learning self-control. I didn’t get any gift cards for Christmas either though, while I did last year, so maybe my brain is just confused or something.

Enough rambling, on to the books!

New Books


Soul Music by Terry Pratchett is my one physical book purchase this month. Indigo topped up my points, so I was able to get it for $10 off. It’s the next Discworld novel I needed and it’s the next Death novel. Kind of a no-brainer. I think this is the one that introduces his granddaughter too, so I’m pretty psyched about that.

On the digital front I bought a few more books. The next two volumes of The Immortal Hulk series by Al Ewing et al that I needed, Abomination and Breaker of Worlds, went on sale, so I scooped them up. I’m looking forward to continuing on with that series.

Here (away from it all) by Polly Hope is a novel I read about in The Book of Forgotten Authors by Christopher Fowler. It’s about society dissolving around a bunch of tourists on an isolated Greek island, as they’re cut off from the rest of the world, and I’m sure there will be many examples of humanity being awful. I plan to read this book soon. Also, fun fact, the cover is a painting done by the author herself.

Novel Discoveries

Thanks to The Book of Forgotten Authors I’ve actually added a lot more books here this month than I normally do. So, I’m going to split them up a bit. The set of books below are all of those I shelved “to-read” after reading the aforementioned book.

The Face on the Cutting-Room Floor by Cameron McCabe, if I recall correctly, is a crime novel that plays with some the format in a meta-textual way. Can’t remember what he said, but Fowler really sold me on it.

Don’t, Mr. Disraeli! by Caryl Brahms and S. J. Simon is a comedy novel that apparently incorporates every cliche from Victorian novels, poking fun at the conventions of the time. I suspect I will have a very hard time tracking down a copy of this book, to borrow or buy.

In Transit by Brigid Brophy is about a traveler waiting in an airport terminal who inexplicably becomes uncertain what gender they are. In an effort to solve this mystery, they begin a madcap series anatomical and philosophical tests.

The Hollow Man by John Dickson Carr and The Case of the Gilded Fly are both locked-room mysteries that caught my attention. The former is compellingly puzzling in its set-up, while the latter is rather quirky example of one of the golden age detective characters who has since been largely forgotten.

A Mirror for England and A Long Hard Long at ‘Psycho’ are both by Raymond Durgnat, talking broadly about English cinema in the former, and very closely at a particular film in the latter. Both caught my interest enough that I’d like to check them out, especially the one about Psycho.

Devolution by Max Brooks caught my eye because I really enjoyed his zombie books, though I haven’t read them in years. This book appears to be in a similar style—fiction written like nonfiction—except this book is about Sasquatch.

The Luminous Dead by Caitlin Starling I read about on another blog, though that person ended up DNFing it, so I’m not sure whether I’ll pick it up or not. It’s horror/science fiction contained within a single setting, though, which still sounds appealing to me, so we’ll see.

I came across Good Samaritans by Will Carver on another blog as well. Another addition to the pile of mystery thrillers I want to read, I suppose. I really don’t read them enough, yet I’ve added more and more without actually starting any. Go figure. I really like the set up of this one, though, so I want to check it out sometime.

Denton Little’s Deathdate by Lance Rubin takes place in a world where people know the date of their death, though not the cause, and young Denton’s is in two days, the day of his senior prom. It sounds like a funny, YA book with some gallows humour, which sounds pretty well up my alley.

Death in Her Hands was a simple addition because it’s the newest Ottessa Moshfegh novel coming out. I’ve enjoyed her work enough in the past that once I hear a new one is coming I make sure to put a pin in it.

Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky by Kwame Mbalia is a fantasy novel for younger readers, which I don’t typically go for, but such an evocative title and adventures with gods old and new has me really interested. Sam’s glowing recommendation over at The Writerly Way cemented my interest.

This is How You Lose the Time War by Max Gladstone sounds like a weird sci-fi romance about two time-traveling agents from opposing sides trying to influence history for either side’s gain, until what begins as a taunt between them becomes something more. I say weird because I remember reading that it’s unclear whether or not these agents are human, and I really like that.

Closing Thoughts

Goodness, that was a lot of new books added to my to-read list. I feel a bit odd adding so many books that I expect to have a lot of trouble finding. I’ve got over 300 books on my to-read list as it is, but I suppose this is better than letting these books recede in my memory, likely to never be recovered again. That’s part of why I made myself pick up Here (away from it all): what’s the point of reading a book about forgotten authors, if you don’t then go read some of them?

Until next time, thank you for reading!



8 thoughts on “New Books & Novel Discoveries (January 2020)

  1. Isn’t it remarkable how quickly your TBR can become huge?! I’ve started a really organized system of piling my new books into a pile under a post-it note labelled “JAN” to keep track of what I brought into the house. Sadly, yesterday “JAN” fell over into “LIBRARY” and became commingled with “FEB” so no one will ever know what I brought into this house when.

  2. Look at you being all adult and restraining your purchasing. xD I love that the one thing you did purchase was a Pratchett book, though. 😉 I actually haven’t read that one yet, but I really need to, so I can finish the Death trilogy officially. I just … didn’t want it to end? xD

    I’ve seen mixed reviews about The Luminous Dead, but I’m super curious about it, too! I think I’ll probably end up giving it a try eventually, because why not? Yaaay for Tristan Strong! But also, oh, the pressure. Don’t hate it. Or don’t tell me if you do. I’ll feel bad haha. I hope you love it, though. It’s definitely different from what you normally read, I think, though it was very actiony, so hopefully it’ll work out. 😀

    • I do really like fantasy, and incorporating mythology into a story is usually appealing to me too, so I probably will like Tristan Strong, it’s more I don’t usually read middle grade books. That’s not to say there’s something I inherently dislike about them though.

      As far as I’m aware, there are two more Death books after Soul Music, are there not? Hogfather and The Thief of Time, from what I remember, though I haven’t read them yet.

      • I think it’s hard, because MG tends to markedly be shallower than the adult novels we’re used to? And for obvious reasons. It’s often hit or miss for me, too, but I’ve been discovering some wonderful MG lately.

        Yes, there are! But I don’t know much about them? I assumed that they didn’t focus on Death, but just included him, but I could be wrong. That was just my impression lol.

      • I was under the impression Hogfather is fairly focused on him, though I believe he shares the spotlight with his granddaughter. I don’t know enough about Thief of Time.

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